Confession – I am REALLY bad at reading books all the way to the end. In fact, I am working on it constantly and paying special attention to it this year. I always just don’t make the time. Or I fall asleep. Or I just can’t get into it. So, when I DO actually finish a book, you know it’s a good one!
So, it may have taken me a good month to finish Wild Mama by Carrie Visintainer, but I’m so glad I did. And be assured, it wasn’t because it was boring in any way – pregnancy just makes me want to sleep. A lot. I also wanted to be sure I was really recommending a book that was in line with my own values. Whether I like it or not, this blog is such a reflection on what we believe as a family, and I can’t recommend something I didn’t stand behind.
“Wild Mama” is a personal account of one woman’s struggle to embrace both motherhood and her adventurous side. It’s what we talk about in almost every post here. And, if you’ve done it (or attempted it), you know it’s just not easy, plain and simple. Parenthood brings you to your knees, quite literally. In more ways than one.
It’s frustrating, empowering, humbling, and brings out every single raw emotion you didn’t know you could feel. But, many women (me included, and many of you too) were not made to just stay quietly at home. We yearn for something more than that…but want to bring our kiddos too (at least some of the time). We need to know that our kids don’t equal an automatic ball and chain. We need to know that we are strong enough, smart enough, brave enough and adventurous enough to step out, even just a little.
While I have different dreams than Carrie, I could relate to her feelings and writing on so many levels. I understand the need to have my “tribe” of people that love the same things I do, and put great value on them too. Motherhood is lonely enough – worse when you feel like you have no support from the community around you.
Here’s where this gets a bit more personal for me – I have an issue with parents that are always trying to get “rid” of their kids to do what they want to do (usually for selfish reasons). It’s my own thoughts, and I am ok wth that – judge away if you will. I was honestly worried that as I read I would get the feeling that Carrie was one of “those moms” that saw her own children as more of a hinderance than a joy. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely struggle with being a parent and balancing my own needs. But, we are about families here and I believe very strongly in that.
Long story short, I LOVE how throughout her book I was quite sure of the fact that she loves her family to the moon and back…and struggled with leaving them behind while she followed some of her own dreams. While I am quite certain that Carrie can attest to the up and down struggles of parenthood, I feel as though she found (and continues to find) a great balance of being a mama and knowing herself. It’s not an easy task.
“Carrie Visintainer’s children haven’t inspired her to settle down. They’ve emboldened her to more daringly explore the world. Visintainer’s memoir, Wild Mama, is a reminder that society doesn’t get to define what motherhood looks like; mothers do.
Leigh Ann Henion, Author of Phenomenal: A Hesitant Adventurer’s Search for Wonder in the Natural World”
The truth is changing – motherhood is changing. It isn’t black and white. And it’s up to mamas like Carrie, like me, like you to be ok with that and live boldly.
Yes, I recommend you read this book. If you have a bit of a wandering spirit or a drive for getting out of the house, read it. If you struggle with fitting in the traditional box of parenthood, read it. If you just want to relate to someone who knows how hard it is to love so fiercely as parents do, read it. You can purchase the book on Amazon here (affiliate link).
Note: there is some language in the memoir. Not something I love, but also obviously the truth from her heart, no sugar-coating.
Find more of Carrie here: http://www.freeyourwild.com
Win a copy of Wild Mama
Thanks to Carrie and her editors, we are giving away 5 copies of Wild Mama.
As usual, please use the Rafflecopter Widget below to enter to win. The winner will be emailed and announced on this post in the Rafflecopter Widget. Have questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact me at mountainmamatales(at)gmail(dot)com so I can help! This giveaway is open to the U.S. and Canada.
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